The Divine Comedy
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|Format:||Paperback, 742 pages, New edition Edition|
|Other Information: ||bibliography|
|Published In: ||United Kingdom, 01 July 1993|
Described variously as the greatest poem of the European Middle Ages and, because of the author's evangelical purpose, the fifth Gospel, "the Divine Comedy" is central to the culture of the west. The poem is a spiritual autobiography in the form of a journey - the poet travels from the dark circles of the Inferno, up the mountain of Purgatory where Virgil, his guide, leaves him to encounter Beatrice in the Earthly Paradise. Dante conceived the poem as the new epic of Christendom, and he creates a world in which reason and faith have transformed moral and social chaos into order. The work has been translated by Charles Sisson and the introduction, diagrams, maps, and notes by David Higgins provide the reader with guidance. It should be of interest to general readers, poets, students at sixth-form, undergraduate and postgraduate level studying Italian, comparative literature, comparative religion, theology, medieval European literature, medieval European history, English literature, history of art, or creative writing.
Prolific author, journalist, and British television personality James offers a modern verse translation of Dante's Divine Comedy. This is the product of 40 years of thought and conversation with his wife, Prue Shaw, a noted Danteist and romance-language philologist. Working from the premise that the greatness of Dante's poetry resides in its command of verse and language, James seeks a version in idiomatic English rather than attempting to replicate the elements of Dante's rhyme, meter, and other verbal features. His goal is to make the whole of the work, not just the more lurid parts of the Inferno, interesting to contemporary readers. Poetically, the results are very good English verse, but much of Dante's verbal symbolism and structural patterns is lost. James eschews footnotes or other scholarly apparatus, instead working the identity of various significant figures into the body of his text. VERDICT James offers here a vigorous, poetic paraphrase of the Comedy rather than a translation. Those interested in something closer to the formal properties of the original should stick with translations by Allen Mandelbaum, Mark Musa, Robert Pinsky, or Robert Hollander and Jean Hollander.-Thomas Cooksey, Armstrong Atlantic State Univ., Savannah, GA (c) Copyright 2013. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
|Publisher: ||Oxford Paperbacks|
|Dimensions: ||18.0 x 11.0 x 3.0 centimeters (0.39 kg)|